Owain Fon Williams has told his young Hamilton team-mates they have the platform and opportunity to realise any dreams they have in football.
The 32-year-old goalkeeper found himself surrounded by youngsters during Wednesday night’s 1-0 defeat by Aberdeen with only one other member of the starting line-up aged over 23.
With Brian Rice struggling to get any of his six injured players back for Saturday’s visit of Ross County, they may be asked to go again.
But Fon Williams does not feel added responsibility as the most experienced man in the team.
“The guys might be young but they are ready to step up, which they showed on Wednesday,” the former Stockport and Tranmere player said.
“I watched the game back on Wednesday night and Thursday morning and, to be honest, we might have switched off for the goal but we had plenty of chances. Full credit to the team, we gave it a right good go and could have got something.
“It’s a proper football club here, there is a platform to learn and get better. Everything is here for us. What better opportunity for the young lads to play against a team like Aberdeen and to have done so well?
“The manager and staff are not scared of giving players an opportunity if they are ready for it. That’s a great thing to know – if you work hard and do well, you will get an opportunity.”
Accies have a recent history of producing international players such as James McCarthy, James McArthur and Michael Devlin.
Fon Williams, who has one cap for Wales, added: “The way I see it, we all have a dream when we are kids, when you play with your brother or your mates or your dad. All I wanted to do was play for my country.
“Another boy might have a different dream, playing in the Champions League or the English Premier League or playing for Scotland or whoever.
“But the lads here can look at the boys who have been here and maybe follow their path into playing international football or whatever. They know it isn’t a dream that is too far-fetched, it’s a dream that could be reality because the platform and opportunity is here for the lads.
“It’s a big deal, you walk into the stadium and see lads who played here and moved on, and I think that gives people inspiration and belief that they can follow that path.”
Fon Williams comes up against a number of former Inverness team-mates when County visit with the likes of Ross Draper, Joe Chalmers and Billy McKay in their squad.
“The lads I know are good players who are experienced in this league,” he said.
“So it will be good to see them but I’m not really bothered who we are facing and whether I know them or not because it’s a game of football and that’s what matters.
“We are here to win and that’s what we are working to do so I couldn’t care less whether they are my friends.”
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